It's been awhile since I've shared some neat, innovative Korean beauty products so when ARITAUM, a nationwide chain that specializes in Kbeauty, reached out, I was immediately interested in trying out a few unique products from popular Korean brands they carry such as Laneige, IOPE, and Mamonde. Included in the roundup are a cushion foundation, which have been extremely popular for the past year or so, sheet masks because who doesn't have fun wearing a sheet mask?, and a face spray made with sparkling water. Read on for my thoughts on these products and how you can get your hands on them >>
I've used (and love!) a cushion foundation before but not one from a Korean brand so I was eager to try out the IOPE Air Cushion XP Natural. If you're unfamiliar with cushion foundations, the liquid foundation is soaked in a cushion sponge that is deposited into a compact. The compact includes a lid that snaps shut snuggly over the cushion to keep it from drying out. There is also a sponge applicator included-- do not throw this out. I find that a lot of people are accustomed to throwing out the included applicators and using their own brush, but with cushion foundations it's recommended to use the sponge applicator, instead of a brush, they come with for best results.
To use, slip two or three fingers into the provided sponge applicator and press onto the cushion releasing the liquid. Apply to face using gentle press/pat motions all over skin.
Tip: Once your cushion seems like it's not giving as much foundation, use tweezers to flip it over.
The formula is on the watery side, so I had assumed it would provide minimal... this was not the case. The foundation, while lightweight, had good coverage and was buildable, which was great because I had some redness and blemishes that needed a little extra attention. Apologies for the scary pic below (my face was a nightmare this weekend!), but you can see how well the cushion formula (on the right side) covers compared to the left side of my face-- it hides the red, covers blemishes, and smoothes and evens out my skin.
This foundation is a total winner! After applying, I used my concealer as normal and set with loose powder. The foundation does give a more dewy finish and feels slightly tacky; I find that it takes longer to set than other foundations and BB creams I have used. I'll work on my eyes to give it longer to set before moving on with other face products (bronzer, blush, highlight, etc.), I love that this cushion foundation also offers SPF 50 protection, which is perfect for when I'm outside in the summer, AND it also comes with one cushion re-fill. Score!
Another product I have been using is the Laneige Brightening Sparkling Water Pop Essence, which is a carbonated mineral water face spray that helps to brighten and clean/purify skin. I can't say that I've noticed a huge difference since using this but then again I don't think my skin has been super dull any way. I find that this does help my skin stay hydrated through the day, as I apply after moisturizing and before applying makeup. To use, I just squirt into my hand (I do NOT recommend squirting directly onto your face. You do not want to get this into your eyes, it will burn. Like hell.) After the fizzing subsides (really cool!) it turns almost into a gel-like consistency which I then gently rub onto my face. The carbonation feels fizzy and gives an instant tightening effect.
What's a post on Korean beauty without a sheet mask? I tried the first Mamonde 7-Day Project Sheet Mask in the set (Rose and Strawberry, which smelled AMAZING!) last night just before bed, I would share of the sheet mask on, but I think the half-face no-makeup one was creepy enough for you all :P (If you really want to see, check out my snaps at manda_wanda) Sheet masks are cotton masks that are soaked in a highly concentrated skincare formulas (you've probably seen some funny selfies of your friends wearing them!) to help moisturize, brighten, hydrate and treat skin.
After leaving the mask on for 15-20 minutes, remove, and then leave the serum on your face. I like to do these masks just before bed so the serums can soak on overnight. This one in particular left my skin feeling hydrated and had an immediate brightening effect. In theory, this set includes a face mask for each day of the week but I'm not sure my skin could handle a mask every day, maybe every 2-3 days or at least once a week.
All of these products mentioned in this post can be purchased online at ARITAUM or at your local store (there's actually several around in SoCal!).
Have you tried any innovative Korean beauty products lately? Share below!
*Products have been provided by ARITAUM for review purposes, however all opinions are my own. No monetary compensation has been provided.